Product Type: Dyson vacuums
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No More Baggage
Member Name: Ayesha-`
Advantages: Bagless, powerful
Disadvantages: Heavy, bullky and hard work
This has been our family vaccuum cleaner for around 10 years now although it has almost been replaced on occasion due to either faults or the appearance of a fancy new model that took dad's eye but was swiftly rejected by mum. Whilst at home we share the vacuuming "equally", and so I have had plenty of experience using it. The extra appeal when buying this product was the fact that it claimed to be particularly good for getting rid of allergens. It was also our first bagless vac so this at the time of buying was pretty exciting.
I can't remember what it cost us at the time of buying and to be honest there are probably not many new on sale now as it would have been replaced by newer versions. However, on a search I have noted that even second-hand it is offered at around the £100 mark, so it is quite a pricey piece, with parts sold at £50 making it expensive if there are problems.
Size and appearance
The thing I disliked most about this product in comparison to our good old Hoover was the new style that was supposedly so much better for moving about the house. So rather than those old single stand up vacuums you have a pipe connecting the 'cylinder' where dust is collected to the mouth of the vac.In between the two, we had another brand that had this set up, and I found it annoying but at least it was no heavier. This one, on the other hand, was a lot heavier. Alright, you get a much more powerful machine for this compromise, but it makes the whole job a lot tougher and really I don't look forward to the job half as much as I used to, especially the stairs! The whole thing is very bulky, and the cylinder particularly heavy, so I usually disconnect the pipe and take the two upstairs separately if not doing the stairs. This helps but not much. It also doesn't really compact much. Yes, you can minimise the inflexible part of the pipe, automatically wind up the power cord and hook the main head onto the cylinder but it still takes up an awful lot of space in storage.
I do like the fact that this device has a clear cylinder where you can see all the dust you have collected. It proves that it is doing the job and at the same time you know when it is ready to be emptied. You can probably also easily identify any blockages on this end although the only one we ever suffered was repaired by dad before I could tell you. I've had to clear away a lot of dead spiders and bugs with this vac but you never see them in the cylinder though! I'm glad for that because it would make me very uncomfortable looking at them, although I don't know what happens to the dirt that goes in and I worry it must get shredded pretty badly. I'd hate to think of those accidental live bugs that have gone in but I guess it must have been quick!
I hate that word but I thought I would use it! Another thing I did not like about this vac in comparison to our previous brand was that the old one had several different power settings. It might be that the most powerful setting adjusts to surfaces and is meant to be suitable whatever you are cleaning, but I'm not sure about that and I'd rather be able to choose and change it. One thing you can alter is the brush head on the main mouth depending on whether you need bristles or not. This I don't really use much, but the bristles are good for the kitchen floor. To be honest I usually forget to change the settings and just wheel over it, which seems to be fine too, but maybe not as effective.
You also have the usual extra heads for getting into small places. I particularly like the pointed pipe, which is slightly tilted, although I don't get why and have not seen any benefit from the different shape. It is very powerful however, with this power of this vac, so be careful and don't be tempted to vacuum around important items on the table, move them first. The small clothes-brush type head I rarely use, on mattresses and for a time I tried it on the stairs as it seemed to be easy enough that way. I tend to find that it needs a good clean itself when used otherwise cobwebs and hairs would cover it up and render it useless (and gross). That's where the pipe comes in useful again. Both of these parts have their own hooks partway along the pipe where they can be placed when not in use, so they shouldn't (although often do) get left behind in some random spot you forget about and then think have lost.
This is a very noisy machine. As well as the sound of the actual vac, when using the main head there are little wheels inside it that also spin and make a lot of noise. If someone is vacuuming downstairs, I can't concentrate on something, sleep or watch telly comfortably as it is so loud. I know they are normally loud anyway (as kids we used to pretend the Hoover was an evil "flying machine" and had to stay high up on couches, beds or washing machines to avoid it catching us - I don't think I understood the meaning of the word "flying"), but this one is particularly noisy and shutting the door doesn't help.
I wish the pipe had more adjustments as the longest is too long for a short person for me and the next length is too short. However the completely compacted pipe is handy for cleaning window sills etc. Moving the vacuum around I find a little clumsy and awkward, although it does manage good coverage and is not impossible to steer. The main head is too big to get under some low surfaces and with the pipe you do have move a lot of furniture around to do a proper job.
Suck it up!
So how powerful is it then? Well, I would say it is a fair bit more powerful than our previous machines. I don't think I can really say too definitively whether the allergen sucking is sufficient because to be honest I don't think it makes much of a difference to make your carpet allergen free, at least not for long. I have terrible hayfever, asthma and allergies, and yes, I suffer less at home but always did. Vacuuming alone makes little difference when I do have problems because the stuff is in the air too.
Our house seems to get dusty very quickly, but I don't think this is too much to the discredit of this device as it picks up an awful lot. One go over the whole house almost half fills the cylinder.
Chuck it out!
So the great thing is no bag to replace. This really saves on cost. We don't throw our dust in the bin, however, as this would fill the bin too quick anyway. Instead, we have a small (now quite ugly) spot in our garden where it is tipped out and left to rot down with the compost. If anything accidentally got in then, I guess we could easily find it, but I'm not sure you'd want to! Anyway removing the cylinder drum is easy, but the lid is tricky, and even harder to put back on. This is annoying because the dust starts to fly about. So I always make sure I empty it as well as possible and the lid is definitely on and the outside clean before bringing it back in the house. I don't mind that it is emptied regularly and actually I quite like emptying it and starting again from scratch. There's something enjoyable about that!
Worryingly, I noticed that some red duct tape randomly appeared on the wire of the vacuum, but apart from this everything has stay pretty much intact. I say this because you don't want to be worrying about those replacement parts! I think there is a small crack in the cylinder drum where people have struggled to put the lid on right and I would say a lot of care needs to be taken with that task. Otherwise, the whole device is fairly robust and in spite of many tumbles it has taken it is still going strong.
As I mentioned before, we did have a brief blockage, but this was really because I think someone attempted to vacuum a weird material like concrete. Whatever happened, it was not how the machine was meant to be used! I have long thick hair that seems to fall in clumps, that whether or not the vacuum should be able to handle, it certainly has. The only problem is that when emptying it's not nice as with long hair you may have to scrap out bits caught where the cylinder tried to spin it all. Yuck.
So in all, this has lasted us quite some time and has been pretty useful for our family. I find the task a much bigger chore with the size and weight of this machine and personally for that reason I would not buy it, because the old one was good enough for me. However, if you really need the extra power and don't mind the awkward bulkiness of this vacuum then it might just be enough.
There are probably similar versions out now that are better and more readily available but hopefully this will give you some idea of what to expect from this kind of Dyson.
Summary: A strong powerful vac that needs a strong powerful user
|Ease of use:|
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